Michigan Trails Week Challenge asks you to exit and record your miles online

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This article is part of Inside Our Outdoors, a series on Southeast Michigan’s connected parks, greenways and trails and their impact on residents’ quality of life. It is made possible by funding from the Michigan Trails and Greenways Alliance.

For those who like to get out on the trails, there is plenty to do in Mitten State. Michigan has more than 13,000 miles of state-designated trails and thousands more managed by local, county and federal authorities.

To honor this multitude of outdoor recreation opportunities, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is once again partnering with the Michigan Trails andHines Road Greenways Alliance (MTGA) will host a special online challenge to celebrate Michigan Trails Week, which will take place from September 19 to 26.

“The purpose of this is to encourage people to find a trail near their home and to go out and experience it,” said Andrea LaFontaine, Executive Director of MTGA. “Whether you walk, run, walk, cycle, whatever your hobby is, it’s really just a way to highlight all the great trails we have in Michigan and encourage people to get out there. and travel for miles on our trails. “

Long-time users and newcomers are welcome to Register now for the free event through runsignup.com and share how many miles they’ve covered on Michigan trails throughout the week.

Event organizers hope that participants will reach a collective goal of 100,000 miles traveled. To entice participation in the fun online, those who register can win electronic badges and participate in an online raffle where they can win prizes like coffee including caps, mugs, T-shirts, posters , gift cards and tickets to Michigan races. events.

Now in its second year, the Michigan Trails Week virtual event has kicked off recognizing that trail enthusiasts may miss out on some of their favorite group events due to the pandemic. Participants hiked about 80,000 miles last year, slightly below the 100,000 mile goal, but have shared a plethora of photos of their trail experiences online. This year, in addition to hiking, biking, horseback riding and boating the water trails, participants will also be permitted to drive all-terrain vehicles (ORVs) during the online event.

Each year the MTGA and DNR introduce a new set of partners for Michigan Trails Week. This year they are showcasing the North Country Trail Association, Motor City Lower Huron MetroparkATV Association, Ionia Horse Trails Association, Paddle Antrim and LAFF Pathways. Fans can learn more about these organizations and make charitable donations to them, as well as an ORV safety training course through the Michigan Trails Week challenge page.

Those interested in participating in the event can also view interactive maps of non-motorized trails and share and view photos on a special site. trail week history map page. For LaFontaine, however, the most important thing people can do is just get involved in the Michigan Trails Week event.

“Even if you hike a mile and a half on your local trail, we encourage you to register and log in,” she says. “You have a chance to win prizes and every mile counts to help us reach that 100,000 mile goal.”

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